By FRANKLIN Q. DE GUZMAN
Archdiocesan Social Action Apostolate Lingayen-Dagupan
BINMALEY, PANGASINAN – Wider news election coverage in Central Pangasinan is expected as some 30 volunteers were trained in this town to become effective citizen journalists.
In a seminar-training on Citizen Journalism on 24 April 2010, Saturday, some Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) volunteers from the different parishes of the Archdiocese of Lingayen-Dagupan (ALD) were taught about responsible news gathering, writing and reporting by some professional journalists. Session on photojournalism was also given. The said event, conducted PPCRV Lingayen-Dagupan (PPCRV LD), aimed at making election monitoring and reporting wider through citizen journalism. This endeavor is a part of PPCRV’s program to ensure a clean, honest, accurate, meaningful and peaceful (CHAMP) May 2010 Elections.
“If more people are informed about what is happening (during elections) through news reporting, the candidates will be more afraid to do evil,” said Fr. Oliver E. Mendoza, exec chair of the Archdiocesan Social Action Apostolate (ASAP) of ALD.
To have a rigid election monitoring and reporting, PPCRV LD, through its Media Desk, will have a blow-by-blow account of the May 10, 2010 elections through its Facebook and Twitter accounts which are accessible to the public. News leads and tips will mainly come from PPCRV volunteers deployed in every precinct of ALD’s covered municipalities and cities.
The participants are expected to re-echo their learning to their co-parishioners who will also act as PPCRV Poll Watchers.
“Our PPCRV volunteers will serve as media’s ‘extended arms, ears, nose and mouth,’” said Janice Hebron, coordinator of ASAP.
According to Fr. Mendoza, PPCRV LD is hoping to fill up all the precincts with PPCRV Poll watchers, as well as fill up all the PPCRV volunteer types. PPCRV LD is hoping to get an ideal 15,000 volunteers to ensure CHAMP Elections.
Prior to the training-workshop, PPCRV LD’s Media Desk has built partnership with other local media and Vera Files, a non stock and non-profit news organization, for wider dissemination of news information.